It’s the little things.

It’s opening the silverware drawer this morning to get a knife and finding one that should be in the dishwasher. It’s crusty with toast crumbs and jam.

It’s finding the salt and pepper shakers in the fridge’s butter compartment.

It’s wondering what happened to the coffee mug I’d just been drinking from. Oh look, it’s in the cupboard with my coffee, still warm, inside.

It’s taking a pan out to cook broccoli and finding yesterday’s mashed potatoes remains.

It’s starting the Christmas baking and having my measuring cups and other utensils cleared away before I’ve used them, likewise the dishcloth I’ll need.

It’s him asking if the hiking boots he’s holding are mine. “Unh uh,” I say.

It’s yet another lost watch so that he’s started looking at the numbers on the cable box again as if it’s a digital clock.

It’s him standing outside the shower door yelling, “How do I stop that beeping?”

“What beeping?” I yell back.

“That…big thing.” I could see through the glass that he was drawing a box in the air.

“Smoke alarm?” He shook his head no. “I’ll be out in a minute.” The “big box” was the fridge, the beeping, the alarm that repeats annoyingly if the door has been open too long.

It’s him banging on the shower door again the next evening. “How do I turn off the squeaky thing in the basement?”

“Give me a minute,” I said. Invisible Fence control box, I figured. Peter spends most of his time downstairs, so the shrill squealing would pierce his ears. My hearing is so bad I can’t hear it unless I’m right beside it.

Unfortunately, I couldn’t reset it. Three days passed before someone could come. “When will it stop” he asked So. Many. Times.

It’s going out to eat, spur of the moment, and seeing his eyes light up when I steer him into our favorite hole-in-the-wall. “What do I have here?” he asks.

“Chicken kebabs,” I say, “but you decided you’d order my favorite next time.

“What do you have?”

“Suguk wrap.” I order for him.

It’s watching him eat something he’s never tried before. He loves it. “I could eat another,” he says, “but I won’t. Are we having dessert?”

“Two baklavas, please,” I say to the waitress. He remembers baklava as soon as he sees it.

“Balaclava,” he jokes, as I knew he would. “Yours is bigger than mine!”

I swap our plates.

It’s the little things that make him happy.

Header photo: Baclava, two please.

2016 National Society of Newspaper Columnists’ contest finalist. 



10 thoughts on “It’s the little things.

  1. Definitely one of your Best, Judy; the little things can, and do, add up to big ones — if you let them. Even those of us long married get on each other’s nerves and with no added difficulties such as yours! You always find the bright shining light to lead you through, and in so doing inspire us all. Thank you! cj

  2. Agree with Carolynn….. and it kind of scares me….I have found some odd things in my freezer! And my coffee mug in the micro wave at the end of the day left there from the morning heat up and forgot it!!! Love this writing!

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